The Music of 'Are'are: Acoustemology, Environmental Influences and Sustainability

Music Humanities Arts and Social Science (HASS) Pacific Area

This thesis discusses the sustainability of contemporary and traditional music from 'Are'are, an area in the Solomon Islands. It examines the environmental influences and the acoustemology of music through local, national and global contexts. This entails analysis of how music, and the material used to make musical instruments, reflects environmental resources, responds to, and is inspired by environmental conditions. It explains the ecological significance of musical structure and function, and how music may exemplify core ecological concepts, for example flows, pulses, dynamic balance (dynamism), development, networks, nested systems and cycles. This thesis looks at how music may exemplify these concepts, amplify and reanimate them to affect music's role in shaping our understanding of the environment. This research demonstrates that understanding function and structure in music can be useful for understanding the structures and functions of ecosystems and of the environment. To look at examples of the relationship between nature and music, this thesis focuses mainly on the music of 'Are'are, from where a relationship with the surrounding ecosystem stems.

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